MAR 13, 2015 03:00 AM PDT

Stranded Leatherback Turtle Rescued in South Carolina

A helping hand to a rare leatherback turtle rescued in South CarolinaMarine biologists at the South Carolina Aquarium are treating a rare, 475-pound leatherback sea turtle that washed up Saturday on a nearby beach.

The episode marks the first rescue of a leatherback sea turtle in South Carolina and is believed to be only the fifth live rescue of this species in the United States, according to the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.

The endangered turtle was found stranded on the Yawkey-South Island Preserve, a wildlife refuge near Georgetown, South Carolina. Rescuers named it Yawkey.

Because the turtle is believed to be a juvenile -- rescuers say it's probably less than 10 years old -- and has not reached sexual maturity, biologists can't yet determine its sex.

Rescuers found no external signs of trauma to the reptile, although it was hypoglycemic. Staffers with the aquarium's sea turtle rescue program gave it antibiotics, vitamins and some time to recover at their facilities.

The treatments appear to be helping. Aquarium officials said the turtle was more energetic Tuesday than when it was first admitted.

Even so, leatherback turtles historically don't do well in captivity. For that reason, aquarium staffers are working with the state's Department of Natural Resources to determine the best place and time to release the turtle back into the ocean -- most likely within the next few days.

Leatherbacks are the largest turtles on Earth and can grow up to 2,000 pounds. They are found throughout the world's oceans and have been spotted as far north as Norway and as far south as South America.

(Source: CNN)
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
SEP 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
SEP 20, 2019
Researchers Discover Two New Frog Species in Ecuador
It seems like newly-discovered animal species are being described and named in scientific journals on a regular basis. With that in mind, it shouldn’...
SEP 20, 2019
Chemistry & Physics
SEP 20, 2019
Irish Teen Removes Microplastics From Water, Wins Google Science Fair
A new invention that removes microplastics from water was designed by 18-year-old Fionn Ferreira -- winner of the Google Science Fair....
SEP 20, 2019
Immunology
SEP 20, 2019
A Food Additive Could Make Your Cat Hypoallergenic
With 10-30% of the population reporting sensitivity to cat dander, you probably know someone with a cat allergy.  That's why scientists at Nestl&e...
SEP 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
SEP 20, 2019
Here's Why High-Speed Cameras Are Used to Film Wildlife
When watching TV shows about wildlife in its natural habitat, filmmakers for popular firms such as Animal Planet and National Geographic often showcase vid...
SEP 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
SEP 20, 2019
Squirrels Feel Safer When Birds Are Chirping in the Background
When you go for a walk at the local city park, you’re likely to see a high number of gray squirrels crawling in and out of trees. In some high-traffi...
SEP 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
SEP 20, 2019
These Monkeys Thought a Troop Member Died, and Their Reactions Are Heartbreaking
Scientists carefully placed a high-detail animatronic ‘spy monkey’ near the site of a troop’s living quarters in an effort to gather info...
Loading Comments...